WaterAid India facilitating a Citizens' Report on domestic water and sanitation

Forwarded to the Portal by: Indira Khurana, WaterAid

WaterAid India is facilitating a Citizens' Report on domestic water and sanitation. It will deal with all contemporary issues involving domestic water, sanitation and hygiene but through citizens' experiences and experiments. Each chapter, each story and each argument will use local perception and possibilities.

The crisis of drinking water is acute. It has been a national policy challenge since Independence. India has spent more than $ 27,625 million in the last 60 years for making rural water and sanitation accessible. That is around $460 million a year. Government data say 94 percent of the rural population has access to safe drinking water through 4 million hand pumps and 0.2 million piped water schemes.

On the other hand, 37.7 million Indians are affected by waterborne diseases annually, 1.5 million children are estimated to die of diarrhea alone and 73 million working days are lost due to waterborne disease each year. The resulting economic burden is estimated at $ 600 million a year. It means the country is losing more than it is spending on drinking water and sanitation due to non-availability of safe drinking water.

Similarly for the growing urban population, access to drinking water and sanitation is going to be a difficult task despite government claim of 91 percent access to drinking water. Because more than 50 percent urban population access water from public source that yields irregular water. More to it there is not enough sewage and solid waste disposal causing many health problems. India will need $6700 million by 2015 to meet its MDG target of urban drinking water and sanitation.

The Citizens' Report is precisely meant to explain and explore this complex sector from citizens' perspectives. It is going to raise questions but will also seek answers. Citizens are the evidence and the prosecutors in the report.

We invite you to be a part of this initiative , whoever you are and whichever ways you want to be. In more than one ways you can help the initiative. You can contribute, you can debate and point at burning issues in the domestic water sector, you can share your experiences from the field, you can point us to state of the art research on the subject and you can simply endorse the initiative. We will be really enlightened if you point out community efforts to solve drinking water problems and making sanitation a natural habit.

To know more about the initiative and to contribute please write to Indira Khurana (Indirakhurana@wateraid.org) and Richard Mahapatra (Richardmahapatra@wateraid.org).

Download here:
Call for Citizens' Report on Domestic Water and Sanitation (.doc, 30kb)




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